Mens Match Reports V Vikings 26 September 2020

8 Oct 2020

First Grade L 12-49

The Owls men unfortunately could not secure the John I Dent Cup minor premiership on Saturday, in a substantial loss to Vikings 12-49.

Two tries in the first ten minutes set the tone for the men in red as they looked to score plenty of points in the wider channels.

Solid defence from flyhalf Willoughby Axelsen and scrumhalf Lachlan Creighton inspired the Owls first grade to lift and get back into the fight. Tries to Brad Pumpa and Jordan Thompson gave the Owls a boost, however the strength of Vikings proved too much.

First grade will play Royals in the semi finals on October 10th.

Second grade W 11-7

After missing out on finals contention, Saturday saw the final stanza of the Owls 2nd Grade’s season played out. While it was too late for any moves up the competition ladder, a great deal of pride was on the line. Besides the gargantuan milestone passed by a certain chrome-domed stud playing frothies, the fixture boasted not one but two centurions. Two club stalwarts of recent memory (in Jordan Thompson and Stee Tikomainiusiladi led the boys onto the paddock to raise their respective bats. A massive congratulations to them both! It didn’t take long for either of the boys to make an impact; Stee’s iron grip stopped the Vikings attack dead in its tracks with a clutch pilfer to force a penalty. This allowed the iceman to stretch his ridiculous left leg and send the ball up the pitch towards the Red Men’s red zone. This set the tone for the opening half of the match, as both sides traded pilfers and kicks in a mid-field arm wrestle. The grass in the 22s didn’t get bothered much at all. Energy in D from Curtis Malaetasi and Stee no doubt inspired the rest of the side. When the boys had ball in hand, Tom McGain was always threatening down the right edge and Alex van Dartel was fearless up the guts. Both teams had moments, but could not convert; the first half expiring before either team could register points.

After the break, the Owls wasted no time. Regaining possession from the kickoff and peppering the Tuggeranong zone. It wasn’t long before a snipe from Patrick Callaughan caught the defence offside, giving JT an easy 3 pointer from in front. Things looked to be settling back into a midfield tussle when Angus Judd secured a loose ball from the line out and stormed 40m downfield. Quick ball from the ruck, just outside the 22, made its way across to super sub Jay Gee-Sea. Kitted-out in a fast pair of white shorts, Joshy sliced through the red backline, put on a big don’t argue and raced/plodded away to dot it down in the corner. Conversion unsuccessful; 8-0 Uni.

Off the restart, the Vikings began to look dangerous until a bear hug tackle from David Kirk ripped the ball free for Tom Callaughan to launch down the field and over the sideline. Poor discipline from Vikings saw them dispute the official’s decision and gift the Owls a penalty kick to give them set piece ball further downfield. With 15 minutes left to play, tensions were running high. The Tuggeranong backs rushed up offside and after the ref’s whistle sounded, the two teams came in for a little push-and-shove. After some time probing the line, the 2s attack was finally rewarded with a penalty under the sticks. 3 points were taken to give the home side an 11-0 lead with under 5 minutes to play.

Desperation from Vikings saw them quickly make their way downfield. After some strong runs, they were able to set up for quick, tight phases close to the line. Not even desperate goal line defence could prevent the big Vikings pack from burrowing across the line for a try. Kick successful, 11-7. Thankfully, the Green and Blue were able to see out the remaining 90 seconds of the game. The final whistle blew after Sam Larritt opted to kick the ball into touch instead of chancing his arm 1v1 with his opposite number.

Full time score: 11-7 in favour of the Owls.

Third Grade W 47-19

The third grade men finished their season with an impressive win over Vikings, the final score 47-19. In what was a try scoring feast, the Owls managed to cross the line seven times to Vikings three.

Centre Josh Gray played like someone who woke up on the wrong side of the bed, aiming up at every occasion and running at faces and not the spaces. His demolishing play got him two tries.

Fourth Grade W 38-31

A cold and blustery day after the pleasant weather of the previous weeks greeted Frothies in their last regular game of the season. It also brought club celebrations of Rob Krauss 400th game for the club, magnificent achievement under anyone’s standards.

As it was the last regular game of the season and the finals berth had been booked, the decision was made to reward the efforts of some of the players who had been training consistently and not getting much game time with a good solid hit out. Their hard work at training had obviously taken root and they did not look out of place with Hugo Chan, Jimmy Grant, Jake Francisco, Callum Booth and crowd favourite Christian Snell demonstrating their capabilities. Christian Snell’s dart from the base of the ruck to score under the sticks the most popular try of the year judging by the reaction of the Owl’s faithful.

The Vikings came away with early points after a succession of penalties gifted them with good field position allowing one of their big boppers to score out wide. This was answered quickly with Kelepi Baba (for early 1980s Norths players – the son of Jali Baba) continuing his good form to score next to the sticks for Kyle Doherty to convert off the back of some slick play and good continuity. Sadly the traffic became a bit one way with the next three tries going to the larger, physical Vikings side, this is not to understate the defensive intent with some excellent low tackling and impressive line speed.

The forwards were able to achieve some set piece dominance with the Vikings lineout being pressured and some excellent scrummaging led by Reece Elliot and Jackson Whiting ensuring front foot ball so the backs.

After an abbreviated first half (27 minutes) the Frothies returned to the fray with Christian Snell replacing a busy Jake Maloney, Sam Rolfe returning to 10 moving Hugo Chan to inside centre the team started to put their better fitness to good use scoring the next three tries to bring themselves ahead of their rivals. This was achieved through working within the systems, maintaining control of the ball and looking to play wide.

A further Viking try threatened to end an excellent game of rugby with a 31 – 31 draw but the Frothies stayed focussed, and in the last minute a chip kick by Edan Campbell-O’Brien bounced favourably for Kyle Doherty to run 60+ meters untouched to push the side into the lead.

Thanks to the Viking’s coach who refereed the first half and to Tom Brown who rapidly did his Smart Rugby qualification before arriving at the ground to referee the second half.

It was good to come away with a win against the second placed Vikings side with a number of very experienced players indicating that they had never been involved with a win over them